Bristol Glider

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Bristol Glider
Role Biplane glider
National origin United Kingdom
Manufacturer British & Colonial Aeroplane Company
Designer George Challenger
First flight 17 December 1910
Number built 1

The Bristol Glider was an early British two-seat biplane glider designed in 1910s by George Challenger and built by the British & Colonial Aeroplane Company at Filton Aerodrome, Bristol.[1]

Challenger was chief engineer of the British & Colonial Aeroplane Company and he designed the glider for Sir George White the company founder.[1] White had the glider built to present to the Bristol and West of England Aero Club after he had been elected president of the club in October 1910.[1]

Challenger had previously designed the Bristol Boxkite, strongly influenced by Henri Farman's aircraft, and the Glider followed the same layout.[2] It had a foreplane well ahead of the wings, mounted on wire-braced wooden booms, which also carried the undercarriage of a pair of long skids carrying small wheels. [2] Four booms, tapering together in elevation, carried a single tailplane rather than the pair used by the Boxkite.[2] The foreplane and tailplane moved together to control pitch.[1] A small pair of rudders was mounted between the booms near the tail.[1] Lateral control was by ailerons fitted on the upper wing.

The Glider first flew from the landing ground at Keynsham on 17 December 1910, piloted by Challenger. It was hand-towed into the air and retrieved uphill using a two-wheel dolly.[1] It was damaged in February 1911 and repaired but a more serious accident on 4 September 1911 cost £30 to repair.[1] The Glider survived until 1912 but the final fate is not known.[1] The Glider had been designed to have a 30 hp (22 kW) engine fitted but this was never installed.[1]


Data from [1]Bristol Aircraft since 1910

General characteristics

  • Crew: two
  • Length: 33 ft 10 in (10.32 m)
  • Wingspan: 32 ft 4 in (9.86 m)
  • Height: 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m)

See also[edit]

Related lists



  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Barnes 1988, p. 54
  2. ^ a b c Goodall and Tagg pp.55-6


  • Barnes, C H (1994) [1988]. Bristol Aircraft since 1910 (3rd ed.). London: Putnam. ISBN 0-85177-823-2. 
  • Goodall, Michael H.; Tagg, Albert E. (2001). British Aircraft Before the Great War. Atglen, PA: Schiffer Publishing. ISBN 0-7643-1207-3.